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Eye of the Times: Centennial Images of Taiwan

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The exhibition starts with images of people and landscapes taken by Scottish photographer John Thomson in Kaohsiung, Tainan, Muzha and Liouguei, after sailing from Xiamen to Taiwan in April 1871 to explore and take photographs. This is followed by images from the Qing period (1871-1895), the Japanese occupation period (1895-1945) and the Nationalist era (1945-2011). They show the different nationalities who have lived on this island over the past 140 years, including the aborigines, the Han nationality, the Hakka people, missionaries and recent immigrants. Through subjects ranging from eminent families such as the Lin Family of Wufeng, to ordinary people and disadvantaged groups, they reflect times of great changes or historical transitions, the vitality of local beliefs and the compassion and rebirth during natural and man-made disasters. Through the lens, the photographers document the lives of early Taiwanese and trace social and cultural development, demonstrating their sense of responsibility to the times, their respect for life, their concern for the environment and their desire for progress and a more humanitarian society.

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